Actors' Shakespeare Project artistic director Christopher V. Edwards discusses the role of classical theatre and Shakespeare after the pandemic and as they relate to the Black Lives Matter and #MeToo movements.
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Christopher Edwards is an actor, director, fight choreographer and educator who most recently was the Artistic Director of Nevada Conservatory Theatre (NCT) in Las Vegas, NV, where he produced over 25 plays and directed 5 productions over 3 seasons; As You Like It, Venus in Fur, Water by the Spoonful, The Bomb-itty of Errors and Twilight Los Angeles; 1992. Prior to being the Artistic Director he guest directed Arcadia and Seven Guitars. While at NCT, Chris created the Homegrown + Organic Playwrights Festival; a community based new works initiative for local playwrights which helped to develop plays that moved on to other theaters and festivals around the country. For his work on The Bomb-itty of Errors, Chris received the Desert Companion Best of the City (Las Vegas) Theater Director for 2016. Prior to moving to Las Vegas, Chris was the Associate Artistic Director, Director of Education and Apprentice Training Program and a 14 year company member with The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival in Cold Spring, New York, where he directed and acted in over 30 productions. As a director; Othello, Romeo and Juliet, The Three Musketeers, Around the World in 80 Days, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, A Winter’s Tale to name a few. As an actor some of Chris’s favorite roles include: Richard in Richard III, Caliban in The Tempest, Posthumus in Cymbeline, Macduff in Macbeth, Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet, Leontes in A Winter’s Tale, Morris in The Blood Knot, Derek in A Mouthful of Birds, Simon in Snatch and Edgar in King Lear amongst others. While freelancing in New York City , Chris co-founded Point of Entry Theater; an education based company dedicated to introducing inner city youth to heightened texts, both classical and contemporary. This work included classics and Hip-Hop Theatre adaptations of classics in collaboration with Lincoln Center’s Meet the Artists Program. Chris has also worked as a director or actor in London’s West End, Off-Broadway, The National Theatre of Oslo in Norway, John Houseman’s The Acting Company in NYC, HERE Arts Center, in NYC, Dorset Theatre Festival in Vermont, Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland, The Helix in Ireland, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Ubu Rep. in NYC, The Flea Theater in NYC, Cleveland Playhouse, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, Hip-Hop Theatre Festival in NYC, Utah Shakespeare Festival, SOHO Rep in NY, Penumbra Theater and the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis amongst others. As an educator, Chris created and headed the professional apprentice training program at the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival and was an Assistant Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, an adjunct faculty member at Montclair State University in NJ and Visiting Faculty at Bennington College in VT. Chris received an MFA from the U. of MN in Association with the Guthrie Theatre.